With fifteen years of demo releases, repeated critical acclaim, and an ever-growing fanbase, Paysage d’Hiver is the epitome of an underground icon with a cult following.
Paysage d’Hiver is the solo ambient/atmospheric black metal project from Swiss musician Tobias Möckl, a.k.a. Wintherr. Between 1998 and 2013, Wintherr released ten recordings he considered demos. These recordings grew in notoriety within underground scenes and, as such, so too did Paysage d’Hiver’s reputation. It wasn’t until 2020 that Paysage d’Hiver released an official studio album, the two-hour ice-cold opus, ‘Im Wald’.
Wintherr clearly takes inspiration from Burzum and works with the lo-fi production style the genre/era is infamous for, but his writing style manages to blend a masterfully done throwback with forward-thinking and innovative concepts. Topics covered have included astral projection, winter, and darkness, while every release could also be considered a concept album. Every album tells part of an overarching story about a strange realm, the titular ‘Paysage d’Hiver’, French for ‘landscape of winter’.
Paysage d’Hiver may seem a clichéd idea on paper (one-man lo-fi atmosblack project), but it’s the approach to this concept, and irrefutable artistic talent that makes the attention and hype that has grown around the project over the last decade very much warranted.